Alex Cora said that the Boston Red Sox “have a good one” in Garrett Whitlock.
That’s true in more ways than one.
He missed all of last season due to Tommy John surgery, and him explaining Friday what it means for him to even be getting another shot will undoubtedly endear him to Red Sox fans.
?(I’m) not taking anything for granted anymore,” Whitlock said. “Just loving every second out there, and that’s what I’m focused right now is loving everything, listening to veterans and soaking everything up. …
“It’s meant the world (to even be back on the field). When you have an operation like Tommy John, it?s never given that you?re ever going to play again. I promised to myself that if I was going to get a second chance and I was going to be back out on the field, I would never take a day for granted again. Every little kid’s dream is to play professional baseball. And I don’t care if it’s at the GCL level or it’s at the Major League level: I get to play a kid’s game for a living, and it’s so much fun.”
Because he is a Rule 5 pick, Whitlock has to break camp with the Red Sox and remain on the active roster, otherwise he would have to be offered back to the Yankees. The early returns indicate that there likely will be a spot for him on the roster.
Whitlock has been developed as a starter, though he likely would be a long relief/opener type for the Red Sox this season. Across 42 minor league appearances (38 starts), he has a 12-8 record with a 2.41 ERA.
You can watch highlights from his five-strikeout outing Friday here.